Food or Comics? | This week's comics on a budget

Welcome once again to Food or Comics? Every week your friendly neighborhood Robot 6 crew details what comics we'd buy at our friendly neighborhood comic shop if we had $15 to spend, if we had $30 to spend and if we had extra money to spend on what we're calling a "Splurge" item. So join Brigid Alverson, Chris Mautner, Kevin Melrose and myself as we run down what we'd buy, and check out Diamond's release list for this week to play along.

Kevin Melrose

If I had $15 to spend, I'd buy ...

Chew #12 ($2.99)

John Layman and Rob Guillory's delightfully quirky series about a police detective turned FDA agent who gets psychic impressions from whatever he eats continues with the return of Poyo, the killer cock. (Image)

The Sixth Gun #1 ($3.99)The Sixth Gun #2 ($3.99)

The Free Comic Book Day edition of the first issue of Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt's new supernatural Western was the big hit of this year's event -- and with good reason: It sold readers on what promises to be a thrilling yarn about the bloody quest for a cursed gun in an Old West markedly different from the one shown in our history books. (Oni Press)

Sweets #1 ($2.99)

Kody Chamberlain (30 Days of Night: Bloodsucker Tales, Tag) debuts his five-issue miniseries about a down-and-out homicide detective pursuing a killer in New Orleans in the days before Hurrican Katrina. (Image)

If I had $30 to spend, I'd also grab ...

Mystery Society #2 ($3.99)

Mystery Society has a good deal going for it -- co-creators Steve Niles and Ashley Wood, a conspiracy theory/action-adventure premise -- but artist Fiona Staples (North 40, Northlanders) is the real selling point for me. (IDW Publishing)

Richard Stark's Parker: The Man with the Getaway Face ($2)

I didn't attend WonderCon, where Darwyn Cooke's prelude to The Outfit debuted, so here's my chance to pick it up -- and at a nice price. (IDW Publishing)

Strange Science Fantasy #1 ($3.99)

Scott Morse's "Strange Science Fantasy" pulpy adventure shorts make the leap from his blog to this anthology series, which features one-page backup stories from Paul Pope. (IDW Publishing)

Gorilla-Man #1 ($3.99)

Atlas collaborators Jeff Parker and Giancarlo Caracuzzo team up to delve into the storied past of Ken Hale. (Marvel)

That brings me to $27.93. Those $3.99 comics sure add up quickly.

Splurge: Young Avengers Ultimate Collection

I only own the first Young Avengers collection, Sidekicks, so this 352-page trade paperback will give me a chance to catch up on all of the Allan Heinberg-Jim Cheung stories -- just in time for their return to the characters. (Marvel)

Chris Mautner

If I had $15 ...

A new Eddie Campbell graphic novel? Well, there goes my $15 right away. Good thing that The Playwright, co-authored with Daren White (who also worked with Campbell on Batman: Order of the Beasts), is such a delight. Presented in landscape format, and offered with third-person text boxes only -- no word balloons or dialogue, it's a look into the inner mind of a middle-aged, sexually obsessed writer, the joke being here that he's also a bit of a recluse and social misfit, so that part of his problem is he hasn't had that much sexual experience to begin with. It's by turns funny, touching and overall a really great character study.

If I had $30 ...

A new volume of Mome? Well, there you go, budget capped. I'm a regular reader of this square-bound anthology series, but even if I wasn't I'd be picking this up for the debut of a new story by Gilbert Hernandez featuring the always awesome Roy, as well as a new "satiric psychedelic epic by Josh Simmons and a guy who for some strange reason wants to call himself The Partridge in the Pear Tree.

Splurge item: The Man with the Getaway Face

Can you have a $2 splurge item? No matter. Since I'm tapped out any financial windfall, large or small, would help procure a copy of Darwyn Cooke's The Man with the Getaway Face.

Brigid Alverson

If I had $15, I'd spend most of it on Felipe Smith's Peepo Choo ($12.95), from Vertical. Smith is an American artist who won an international comics competition sponsored by the Japanese publisher Kodansha. The prize was the opportunity to write a regular series for Kodansha's Morning 2 magazine, one of the smartest manga magazines catering to adult readers. Peepo Choo promises to be violent, profane, and incredibly interesting‹just look at the cover and you can see that.

With just two bucks left, I'd go for Richard Stark's Parker: The Man with the Getaway Face ($2). This is a bit of a cheat because I actually own it‹I picked it up at ALA. So I know that Darwyn Cooke has really brought these Parker stories to life with an economical storytelling style and an elegant ink line. You couldn't find a better way to spend two dollars than to buy this comic.

That's $14.95, leaving me a nickel for my piggy bank.

If I had $30, I'd add in ...

The first volume of Brody's Ghost ($6.99), because I love Mark Crilley's work, and I read the first chapter on MySpace Dark Horse Presents and liked it a lot.

The story of Nathan Edmondson and Brett Weldele's The Light ($2.99) is straight-up sci-fi, but the characters and the art push the story to another level. This is a comic that you experience as much as read.

The Sixth Gun, by Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt ($3.99). After reading the first issue online here at Robot 6, I was hooked. Sign me up for the duration.

That's $28.92, so I'm still running a little under.

I don't see any big splurge items grabbing me this week, but if I had a little extra coin, I'd go for the second issue of Frenemy of the State ($3.99). It's my guilty pleasure--it's not a great literary experience, but it sure is a lot of fun.

And speaking of guilty pleasures, I would set another $2.99 aside for Archie & Friends #145, because this issue features Riverdale Shore, their Jersey Shore parody, which sounds like perfect summer reading.

That gets me out of the store for $35.90, which is not too bad for a good-sized sheaf of comics.

JK Parkin

If I had $15 to spend, I'd get ...

Brody's Ghost ($6.99)

Mark Crilley's story about a guy mentored by ghosts received a nice preview on MySpace Dark Horse Presents earlier this year, and now moves into the first of six print volumes. Based on what we've seen online so far, it should be a lot of fun. (Dark Horse)

Orc Stain #4 ($2.99)

James Stokoe is drawing the hell out of this series, about a one-eyed orc with the ability to find the weak spot in any structure has started to notice cracks in the endless war and conquest of orc existence. It's a fantasy series with a little bit of a crime comic thrown in, and it's a heck of a lot of fun. (Image)

Thanos Imperative #2 ($3.99)

Nova, the Guardians of the Galaxy, Thanos, Silver Surfer, Quasar, the Inhumans and just about any other cosmic character in the Marvel Universe team up against the invading forces from the Cancerverse, a universe where death doesn't exist. If you're a fan of Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning's cosmic adventures, then this is probably a must read for you as well. (Marvel)

That puts me at $13.97.

If I had $30 to spend, I'd also get ...

Batman #701 ($2.99)

Grant Morrison and Tony Daniel once again team up on the flagship Batman title to tell the overdue story of what happened between Batman R.I.P. and Final Crisis. (DC Comics)

pood #1 ($4.00)

Jim Rugg, Brian Maruca, Geoff Grogan, Joe Infurnari and many, many more contribute to this newspaper-sized comic. If you don't see at your shop, you can buy a copy here. (Big If)

Chew #12 ($2.99)

I had fallen behind a couple of issues on this title, so over the weekend I went back and read all the prior issues. Reading it as a whole, I can say that it holds up very well ... I like how it will explore one subplot, then put it on hold for awhile, then bring it up again later to show how it connects to another ... it's a very well done series and reads well as single issues or all at once. (Image Comics)

The Sixth Gun #2 ($3.99)

Kevin and Briigd already covered this one pretty well, but I just wanted to add that I've been waiting patiently for more of Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt's supernatural western since Free Comic Book Day, so I'm really glad to see the second issue finally get here.

Looks like I total out at $27.94 ... which leaves me enough for the Parker preview I think everyone else has mentioned, but I already have it.

Splurge: Matt Kindt's Revolver

Matt Kindt, who Tim interviewed earlier this week, returns with a new graphic novel from Vertigo after killing it a couple of years ago with Super Spy, his collection of interwoven short stories about the lives of spies during World War II. It was fun not only because of the plot, but also the storytelling techniques Kindt used to tie all the stories together, so I'm looking forward to seeing what Kindt does with this one.

What are you getting this week? Let us know in the comments section.

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